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Should our children's role models come from TV?

3 years ago

Kelly Rose Bradford writer
Kelly Rose Bradford Journalist and broadcaster London, GB
No, I don't think they should. And although I can't really argue with the general sentiments of BBC commissioning editor Melissa Hardinge who has said she is cracking down on 'sexy' kids' TV presenters and having stars remove their red lipstick before broadcasting to children, I can't help but think that we should not be looking to TV for our kids' role models in the first place.
I can't imagine my son finding a 'hero' in the little television he does watch (Dr Who and old skool comedy like Fawlty Towers) but regardless, I would not particularly want him to be taking his life cues from the world of light entertainment.
Obviously there is a crossover – people I hope would influence him like scientists, politicians, writers will of course all be featured on TV - but I would like him to take his aspirations from their achievements, not their ensuing fame.
Indeed, I am not even sure that I am that keen on him having role models that he can't actually interact with anyway – surely the influence of anyone a child sees on TV is totally one-dimensional? Instead, his grandfather, headmaster, tennis coach, and our elderly neighbours are far more worthy of the title than anyone I have ever happened across on children's television.
It makes me wonder if we are not actually too obsessed with creating role models for our kids and placing those who do provide entertainment for the younger generation under huge pressure to live up to OUR parental expectations - often resulting in them crashing out of favour when their 'real' lives are revealed, or when they can no longer cope with their fame and influence.  
Perhaps we all need to be looking closer to home for people for our children to look up to – and removing the pedestal (not just the red lipstick) we have placed some elements of the entertainment industry upon. 

What do you think? Should children look for role models on TV? Tell us in the comments below.
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Opinion 3 years ago

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